Identifying an abusive relationship – It’s harder than you might think

With high numbers of Australians experiencing domestic abuse, some may wonder how a person can fall in love and stay with their abuser. This may in part be motivated by self-protective desire to believe “that wouldn’t happen to me, I wouldn’t let it” and a desire to believe that the world is ultimately fair. Whilst … Read moreIdentifying an abusive relationship – It’s harder than you might think

Domestic Violence in Rainbow Families

Domestic and family violence is a pervasive social problem that can have significant, long-term effects for a survivor’s physical and mental health (Queensland Government, 2015).  In Australia in 2012, it was estimated that 17.0% of all women and 5.3% of all men had experienced an incident of domestic violence at least once in their life … Read moreDomestic Violence in Rainbow Families

Why I Study Heteronormative Rape as a Young Male

Whenever someone I don’t know too well, a distant friend, someone at the gym, or even the lady at the convenience store, asks me “so what is your PhD on?”, I try (as my supervisors suggested), to sum up the next four years of intense research into just one statement. Nowadays, I will usually just … Read moreWhy I Study Heteronormative Rape as a Young Male

The order in the seemingly chaotic: How and why I research what I do

I was fifteen when I first encountered something struck me as making absolutely no sense. In a sentencing hearing Old Bailey Judge Sir John Leonard declared of a rape victim that “the trauma suffered by the victim was not so great”. He promptly handed out a longer sentence to one of her attackers for breaking … Read moreThe order in the seemingly chaotic: How and why I research what I do

Haemophobia – Investigating the ongoing effects of stigma on motivations, perceptions, and risks of gay blood

Changes to the status quo regarding gay blood donation began occurring in the late ‘00s, continue in 2018, and are very likely to continue on into the future as Blood Collection Agencies (BCAs) around the world respond to the growing public pressure from advocacy groups and to the mounting clinical evidence that the status quo … Read moreHaemophobia – Investigating the ongoing effects of stigma on motivations, perceptions, and risks of gay blood

Even better than the real thing or Frankenblood? The acceptability of synthetic blood

Associate Professor Barbara Masser with Alison Gould The University of Queensland; The Australian Red Cross Blood Service Many years ago, way back in the 20th century, some inquisitive soul asked me what I researched. “Blood donor recruitment and retention” I said proudly. Shooting me a look that suggested I had instead said “how to slaughter … Read moreEven better than the real thing or Frankenblood? The acceptability of synthetic blood

Abortion Law Reform and Destigmatisation in Australia: How Can Social Scientists Help?

Medical and surgical abortions are safe procedures with low mortality rates for Australian women1. Despite this evidence, it is currently illegal for women to access abortions in New South Wales and Queensland unless a doctor believes a woman’s physical and/or mental health may be jeopardised by continuing with the pregnancy2. Although abortion is legal in … Read moreAbortion Law Reform and Destigmatisation in Australia: How Can Social Scientists Help?

Multiplying the joy of giving: Why texting blood donors works

Associate Professor Barbara Masser with Alison Gould The University of Queensland;  The Australian Red Cross Blood Service “Hi Kylie, your blood donation is at work!  Your blood has gone on to save lives at St Vincent’s Hospital”. My friend proudly showed me the text she had received after her last blood donation.  As we caught up … Read moreMultiplying the joy of giving: Why texting blood donors works

Making Good (Policy): The SPSSI 2017 Summer Conference

In July this year, I headed off to Albuquerque to present at the annual Society for Psychological Study of Social Issues (SPSSI) conference in New Mexico, USA alongside my fellow PhDers, Tulsi Achia, Morgana Lizzio-Wilson. I hadn’t been to a SPSSI conference, or to the States, and I didn’t know much about Albuquerque, (except that … Read moreMaking Good (Policy): The SPSSI 2017 Summer Conference

2017 Honours Projects: Victim Blame in the Courtroom

Legal decision-making in relation to sexual assault is often influenced by shared social beliefs (schemas). In investigating these beliefs, prior research has confounded different schemas – offence prototypes, sexual script schemas, and victim and perpetrator stereotypes. At this stage, it is unclear which schemas are influential and when, making it difficult to reduce the impact of … Read more2017 Honours Projects: Victim Blame in the Courtroom

Forensic Evidence in the Courtroom

Contrary to popular belief, forensic comparison evidence, such as fingerprint evidence, are tasks completed by a human not a computer. For over 100 years, fingerprint experts have been able to testify in a court of law that two prints match to the exclusion of all other people, without any empirical evidence supporting the validity and … Read moreForensic Evidence in the Courtroom

Why do people (not) give to charity?

I started my PhD to find out why people give to charity. And why they don’t. Before starting at UQ I worked in fundraising and communications for child-focused charities at home (New Zealand) and abroad (El Salvador, Dominican Republic, Haiti, and Thailand). It was an emotional job. On the one hand, I got to see … Read moreWhy do people (not) give to charity?